2013 Winner: Felix Baumgartner
The votes are in, and we’re pleased to announce that Felix Baumgartner is the 2013 People’s Choice Adventurer of the Year. The Austrian BASE jumper made history on October 14, 2012, by completing a seven-year quest to become the first person to break the speed of sound without the protection or propulsion of a vehicle when he free fell from 127,852 feet above Earth. He also set three official world records. The 43-year-old has made a career out of pushing the boundaries of human flight with daring skydiving and BASE-jumping feats around the world. See photos of some of his best here, then get to know him in our interview.
Free Falling at the Speed of Sound
Photograph courtesy Red Bull Stratos/Red Bull Content Pool
On October 14, 2012, Austrian pilot Baumgartner, 43, jumped from his capsule during the final manned flight for Red Bull Stratos in Roswell, New Mexico. Baumgartner fell from 24.2 miles above the Earth and became the first human in free fall to break the sound barrier. The feat captured the attention of the world and was broadcast live on TV and the Internet. It was watched live by a record audience of more than eight million people on YouTube.
“I wish the whole world could see what I see,” said Baumgartner before he leapt. “Sometimes you have to go up really high to understand how small you really are.”